As part of the new statewide lockdown in NSW, a further 500 Australian Defence Force troops, in addition to the 300 already deployed, will assist with compliance checks and patrols in NSW while police ramp up operations across the state, AAP reports.
Police minister David Elliott says Commissioner Mick Fuller requested the ADF reinforcements along with the boost to health orders.
“We’ve had to tighten the current public health orders because of the minority who exploited them,” he said in a statement on Saturday.
Defence personnel have also been assigned in Victoria to assist authorities with enforcement.
AAP reports a Sydney GP clinic that charged people hundreds of dollars to be vaccinated with Pfizer has been referred to the medical watchdog and will not be given any more Covid-19 vaccines.
Patients who were worried they would not be able to get a second dose will now be able to receive it at a nearby clinic next weekend.
Blessed Health Care came under the scrutiny of the federal health department after AAP revealed in late July it was charging up to $250 for a consultation before administering the Pfizer vaccine.
The clinic has two premises in Campsie in south west Sydney, one of the areas hardest hit by the current outbreak.
The clinic has been removed from the vaccine rollout program, following an investigation into the clinic’s non-compliance with the program.
It no longer appears on the official list of locations to get a Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine.
Doctors are not supposed to charge for the vaccine or the consults in which it is administered, even if a patient does not have Medicare.
The clinic has been ordered to immediately contact and refund all patients who paid for the vaccine.
Blessed Health Care began issuing refunds to patients last week, and did not respond to AAP’s requests for comment.
25 new cases in Victoria
Victoria has reported 25 new cases of Covid-19 overnight.
Just under half – 12 – were isolating while infectious, and four of the 25 have not yet been linked to the current outbreaks.
That’s four more cases than yesterday for those keeping track.
Reported yesterday: 25 new local cases and 0 new cases acquired overseas.
– 23,076 vaccine doses were administered
– 32,286 test results were received
More later: https://t.co/lIUrl1hf3W#COVID19Vic #COVID19VicData [1/2] pic.twitter.com/cPMA8FfJpq
at 11.26pm BST
Good morning and welcome to the Australian Covid-19 live blog for Sunday.
The entire state of New South Wales is in lockdown now, after reporting 466 new cases and four deaths on Saturday. The week-long lockdown of regional NSW to join with greater Sydney was announced on Saturday afternoon, via a tweet from premier Gladys Berejiklian and without a press conference.
No doubt that decision will be the focus of today’s press conference.
Berejiklian yesterday described the state’s fight against the Delta strain as “literally a war” and the situation dire until double dose vaccination rates in the state reach 70%.
From midnight Sunday, police have been given powers to issue $5,000 on-the-spot fines for anybody breaching self-isolation orders, with identical penalties for lying to obtain a travel permit, or lying to a contact tracer.
People can be fined $3,000 for exercising in groups larger than two or for breaching rules around trying to enter regional NSW.
People will also be restricted from travelling more than 5km from home for exercise and other permitted activities, down from 10km.
Victoria reported 21 cases of Covid-19 on Saturday, with 10 in the community while infectious. The latter number will need to go down to zero or close to zero if the state is to exit from lockdown on midnight Thursday as planned.
The Victorian case numbers should be up first this morning.
In the ACT, signs to come out of lockdown are more promising, with the capital recording just one new case yesterday, taking the cluster to seven cases.
In Queensland, the state recorded six new cases all linked and in isolation.
I’m Josh Taylor and I will be taking you through the next few hours and the run on press conferences we tend to have around 10am-12pm every day now.